Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Thursday, Day Two

Woke up this morning to the sound of rain…LOTS OF IT!!! We got packed up around 8:00am went down to the first floor for a continental breakfast…not bad for the price…FREE!!! Then we walked around the hotel parking lot looking at the other bikers, bikes that were also trapped like rats due to rain. We ended up back in the lobby shooting the bull with the other bikers about road trips until the rain cleared out around 10:00am.
Time to hit the road; we were only a few miles from the entrance of the trace so after a quick gas fill-up…we were there. A few photos later and we were on the long curvy road 444 mile long.

Let me start by saying…to me the first 30 miles out of Natchez, is very, very beautiful I can only imagine what it looks like in the fall or a little later in the spring when all the trees had bloomed. Here are a few photos.

The speed limit is 50 mph; would be kind of slow in a car I think, but to me it was a good speed on a bike, plenty of twists and turns.

Almost all of the bridges that cross the trace have that dome shape to the underside…nice touch.

There were monuments

Historical stops

And even restrooms all along the way.

We did not see much as far as wildlife (I think it was just too cold) I saw lots of black birds, four turtles crossing the road

(No not that kind of turtles)

And couple of flocks of turkeys (AND YEA FLOCK IS RIGHT I LOOKED IT UP)

We road right through Jackson, Mississippi

Then road into Ridgeland to get something to eat…we ended up finding what I call an outdoor strip mall (parts still under construction) ate at Sweet Peppers.

Then back on the road again time to stretch out and ride (ok I just wanted to post this photo of my foot, looks like modern art to me. Ha-ha.)

Pasted by some huge lakes right outside of Ridgeland

Then it was home for the night, at the Jamestown Inn in Tupelo, Mississippi


Sunday, March 28, 2010

Wednesday…Day one…

Wednesday…Day one…well we made it to Natchez, somewhere around 150 miles. We ended up getting a room at the Isle of Capri Casino
right on the Mississippi river.
I decided to keep a running account of the money I spend along the way…I’ll post it at the end of the trip blog.

Ok here is how the day started…you know how it is when you’re trying to get away from work, the work just keeps coming.

Well Dave and I finally got our office work caught up so we were off…

to the motorcycle part store that is…no not Natchez yet. Dave had decided to invest in some highway pegs

for his bike (wise move on a long ride). Anyway after the purchase we went by my house so I could pack while David bolted on the pegs. Then we were off to Natchez…we ended up stopping at a little country store to get gas and a drink.
While we were having our drink and updating our Facebook page on our iphones, we noticed this guy and a girl staring at us while they filled up their car.

This guy turned out to be quite the character…once his wife went in the store to pay, he yelled out what kind of bikes are we riding. Then he began to tell us of his motorcycle adventures…he told us he had a 600 cc Yamaha, due to his small frame…he weighed in a good hundred pounds soaking wet. He told us about how he use to speed all around the country side (while all the time jumping around in a very excited manner…demonstrating his motorcycle moves). He loved riding, until he had a bad wreck breaking his prosthesis…Ahhh, did I forget to mention he was missing his right hand. David, being David, asked how in the world did he gas the bike with no right hand…the guy then told us how the prosthesis fit
and worked and how he could hold the gas with it…well until he crashed and destroyed it and the bike. This just goes to show,where there is a will to ride there is always a way. His wife then came back out, he wished us well on our trip and we were gone.

Then and hour or so later we cruised into the city of Natchez…David had been there about a year before for a wedding, so he had and idea on how to get to the river…the mighty Mississippi. The sky’s been looking a little dark, so we made a quick stop at the river, snapped a few photos,
the headed out to get our room. We ended up staying at the Isle of Capri Casino; it is located right on the river next to Natchez under the hill.

The room was not bad at 68 dollars a night…Warning we saw a posting in our room that said the rate was like 165 dollars a night on weekends…too much money for what you get. Due to the dark sky’s, we headed out for quick ride around town and snapped a few photos...

then a stop at Shoney’s to grab a quick dinner. (Not bad but our least favorite meal of the trip)

Then it was back to the room to get some sleep, for the big day on the trace Thursday.
Day two coming soon…
Big Al

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Natchez Trace Parkway

Today’s the day; day one of a four trip up the Natchez Trace. A small change in plans, I will be leaving today right after work in route to Natchez, about a three hour ride. I also will be ridding with Big Dave as he has decided to tag along on the trip. (More on Dave later) Plans are to get a room tonight in Natchez, get a early start on the trace Thursday morning and just ride…no plans, but would like to cover at least 230 miles…the trace is 444 mile long from Natchez, Mississippi ending in Nashville, Tennessee, hopeful lee reaching Nashville Friday afternoon; Leaving Saturday for a long interstate ride back home, with Sunday as a backup.

I just have to mention this (in my sick mind I found this funny)

my wife and I have one of those radio alarm clocks…well this morning when it went off the song by AC/DC “Highway to Hell” was blaring,

then I went out side to see a heavy fog had moved in…I snapped this photo
on the way to work…The red light looks like demon eyes peering through the fog…

what a start to a 1000 mile round trip motorcycle trip…Ha-ha. I hope someone is not trying to tell me something…

I’ll be updating from the road…keep up.
Big Al

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Cobra installation

No, no, not that kind of cobra…

cobra pipes on my 2008 Yamaha v-star 1100.

I’ve been working a lot of overtime lately; so I decided it was time for a little reward. Yep you guessed it a set of cobra pipes. The pipe was dropped off a couple of days ago at my front door, isn’t the internet great… Ok, on with the story.

I talked to my buddy Dave and he agreed to meet me at the compound Saturday morning at 10:00am to do the installation. Neither one of us had ever done this before, so it was kind of like the blind leading the blind. Ha-ha.

Here are a few photos I took of the process…truth is, it was a very easy job…it took us two or three hours…

First…stock pipes

Second…removed 4 bolts to lower the foot rest and the break master cylinder.

Third….loosen two clamps remove a couple of bolts to remove the rear mufflers. 4 more bolts and the front pipes were off also.

Fourth…place the new pipes on, and then next the heat shields…on a funny note the hardest thing to do was placing a single screw in the end of the pipe to hold the tip in…Murphy law tell us there is always one. Ha-ha.

Fifth…DONE, take a look…great looking pipes…

I tried to shoot a short video on my new Flip camcorder….hope it works…check it out…I’ll do better on the next recording. Still learning
We did a quick ride to the Mexican restaurant to get something to eat…the pipes sound outstanding…its like riding a whole new bike…bike runs great…you may notice it sounds a little rough in the video, that only because the bike was cold, I had a little to much choke on….I’ll do another video later so you can hear the final product.
Till then
Big Al

States I’ve traveled to over the years

big als music